Xamarin Blog

An open source mobile platform for building Android, iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS apps with .NET.

Mastering the Android Support Libraries

Android Support Libraries are an essential part to every Android application and you'll find them absolutely everywhere. The Support Libraries offer developers the ability to add the latest and greatest features of Android to their application while maintaining backward compatibility with older versions of Android. As new versions of the Android SDK continue to roll out, so do updates to the Support Libraries; keeping them up-to-date and installing the correct versions is an important (and sometimes frustrating) part of Android development. This blog post will help demystify the Support Libraries and help you upgrade to the latest versions.

Securing Web Requests with TLS 1.2

In my years of development, one thing I've learned for certain is that securing your network requests is an essential part of any mobile application. A few weeks ago one of my own applications stopped working due to a change to a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate on meetup.com's authentication server, which made me realize the important role Transport Layer Security (TLS) plays in securing app and server requests.

Simplified Android Keystore Signature Discovery

The Android Keystore is at the heart of every Android application. It enables us to sign our applications and ship them to the app store securely, but also holds additional signature information needed for Google Play services and other APIs, such as Facebook. This new extension makes it super simple to get access to everything you need to sign your app!

Consumable In-App Purchases

If you are building a game or application with content that needs to be purchased multiple times, you'll need to integrate consumable in-app purchases (IAPs) into your application. In my previous IAP blog post, I covered the basics of setting up your app for IAP transactions, adding the IAP items to Google Play and iTunes Connect, and introduced you to the In-App Billing Plugin for Xamarin that greatly simplifies the process of adding IAP to your application's code. Today, we'll take a look at consumables and how they offer a slight tweak to the development process.

Integrating In-App Purchases in Mobile Apps

Developers often need to integrate monetization to generate revenue when developing mobile apps. There are several ways to monetize apps, but at some point you may want to introduce In-App Purchases, or IAPs, into your app. IAPs can be used in several ways that could apply to your apps, such as adding features, removing ads, or buying in-game currency. Let's take an in-depth look at IAPs and how to add them to mobile apps.

Round Launcher Icons in Android 7.1

Circular launcher icons have become standard since the introduction of Android Nougat 7.1 and the new Pixel Launcher. Google has even introduced a new API enabling developers to specify a round launcher icon for launchers that support it, which is great if you have strong branding and only want a round icon to show up to match the launcher.

Enhanced Device Logging in Visual Studio

During development we often print out logs, warnings, and errors to the console to help with the debugging process. However, with the complexity of mobile operating systems and applications, we often need to see what's happening on the device or being logged by other parts of the operating system. This is where the iOS and Android device logs come in to help; they've been completely redesigned in the latest version of Xamarin for Visual Studio.

Live XAML Previewing with the Xamarin.Forms Previewer

One of the most time-consuming parts of development is the the build and run cycle, or the time between writing a line of code and seeing it execute. Real-time feedback makes development faster, easier, and more fun for developers. The Xamarin.Forms Previewer renders a live preview of a page side-by-side with the XAML markup, allowing you to see your user interface come to life as you type.